Gama Bomb
Sea Savage

Listen, hear me out.

2020 was bullshit.

I KNOW! Wild claim. One that certainly hasn’t been used to frame the context of endless metal album reviews. No sir. This is Grade-A original material here!

So, why do I bring the 2020 thing up THIS time? Well, for a while there, it seemed like maybe, JUST MAYBE, we were finally pointing this thing in the right direction. Curves were flattened, businesses were reopened, and did we learn from past mistakes? HAHAHA NOPE. Settle back in folks cuz we got it ALL fucked up, and now we’re looking at a whole goddamn winter’s worth of isolation.

So the point is, you’re gonna need something to help pep you up through some inevitable rough patches, and my friends – Ireland’s sons of thrashing tomfoolery are here to serve up the smiles and get you off that couch to thrash around your quarantine space at breakneck speed. Gama Bomb is here to bring the party.

While the Warbringers, Havoks and Vektors of the world have been serving up the more serious side of modern Thrash in more recent years, Gama Bomb have been more than happy to fill the more fun, upbeat Anthrax/S.O.D. counterpart – but like their spiritual predecessors they’ve also got the chops to back up their tongue-in-cheek (some might call gimmicky) ways. Getting right down to business, Sea Savage begins with the super fun “Judo Killer,” packed to the brim with precision riffs and some extremely busy drum work, a theme that plays throughout the entire album – this unit plays tighter and cleaner than a German chemist’s asshole. Not a single off-beat note to be found here, and it’s all impeccably produced – allowing every instrument to come through the mix clearly.  Which is just as well, really, as it’d be a shame for Joe McGuigan’s killer bass backbone to get lost. Just turn to the killer bridge on “She’s Not My Mother, Todd” to get a great example of the bass and drums holding everything together while guitarists Domo Dixon and John Roche lead the way with some tricky, acrobatic guitar work. Everyone works together beautifully, and it makes for a super satisfying listen.

On full display once again are vocalist Philly Byrne’s unique vocals. While his style may not everyone’s cup of tea, his range remains as effortless and impressive as ever, and it certainly gives the band another element that sets themselves apart from the pack. Those falsettos on “Iron Blood” and album standout, “Sea Savage,” just add to the exuberant, fun-loving experience, inspiring me to (very poorly) try to mimic in the shower. I apologize to my wife, neighbors and dog – but I can’t help it. The whole thing is just too intoxicating.

And the band is still here to appeal to your innermost movie buff – from Italian cult classic “Miami Supercops” (one of the albums strongest tracks), to Terminator 2 on the aforementioned “She’s Not My Mother, Todd,” to a Jungle Book reference (of all things) on “Sheer Khan,” Gama Bomb continue to lean fully into their roles as bringers of all things fun and not-at-all-serious. It’s a refreshing and invigorating escape from a world gone fucking haywire, and you can’t help but let these Irishmen worm their way into your heart.

Look, this isn’t an album or band hellbent on blowing you away or hitting you over the head with some grand, world-changing opus. That sounds like too much work. No, Gama Bomb are happy to just provide the world with another opportunity to break away from the bullshit of the world and have a fucking blast for a little bit, while also providing you with some high-level musicianship to keep it from becoming a gimmick or to “shtick-y.” Don’t think too hard about this – just press play and have some damn fun.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Steve K
January 7th, 2021

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